Monthly Archives: July 2015

Judicial Review: Umpire’s Decision Upheld

By Larry Munn and Glen Boswall, with assistance by Michael Larsen, Articled Student

In the recent judgment of Vandale v. Wawanesa Mutual Insurance, the British Columbia Supreme Court was asked to judicially review the decision of an umpire, who was appointed to settle a property valuation dispute under s. 12 of the BC Insurance Act. At issue was the appropriate valuation of several pieces of insured jewelry that had been stolen from the insured’s home.

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ILN Today Post

Advertising, Marketing & Promotions Alert >> Consumer’s California Lawsuit Challenges Department Stores’ “Compare At” Pricing

A consumer has filed a putative class action lawsuit in a federal district court in California that challenges the legality of “Compare At” pricing used by a department store chain.

Allegations
The plaintiff is alleging that Ross Stores, Inc. labels products it sells in its California stores with false or misleading comparative prices that purport to be prices charged by other merchants for the same products but that are not competitors’ actual prices. More…

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How Should Employers Revise Confidentiality Agreements to Comply with SEC Rule 21F-17(a)?

On April 1, 2015, the SEC issued its first-ever enforcement action against a company for using overly restrictive language in one of its confidentiality agreements in violation of SEC Rule 21F-17(a).  We posted previously regarding the settlement order between the SEC and KBR, Inc.  In that Order, KBR, Inc., agreed to include the following language in its confidentiality agreements:

“Nothing in this Confidentiality Statement prohibits me from reporting possible violations of federal law or regulation to any governmental agency or entity, including but not limited to the Department of Justice, the Securities and Exchange Commission, the Congress, and any agency Inspector General, or making other disclosures that are protected under the whistleblower provisions of federal law or regulation. I do not need the prior authorization of the Law Department to make any such reports or disclosures and I am not required to notify the company that I have made such reports or disclosures.”

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EEOC Rules Discrimination Based On Sexual Orientation Illegal Under Title VII

In the wake of several high-profile wins for the LGBT community, the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (“EEOC”) added employment discrimination protection to the list.  On July 16, 2015, the EEOC ruled that discrimination against employees based on sexual orientation is prohibited by Title VII of the 1964 Civil Rights Act of 1964 (“Title VII”) as discrimination based on sex.

The EEOC held that “[s]exual orientation discrimination is sex discrimination because it necessarily entails treating an employee less favorably because of the employee’s sex.”  The EEOC noted that sex-based considerations also encompassed gender-based considerations under Title VII. This ruling, if accepted by federal courts, would extend protection under Title VII to decisions made on the basis of sexual orientation. While only the Supreme Court can issue a final, definitive ruling on the interpretation of Title VII, EEOC decisions are given significant deference by federal courts.

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All “Duncan” and Dusted with carry-over entitlements? Not quite, but hopefully getting there.

The Employment Appeal Tribunal (“EAT”) has now provided further clarification on holiday carry-over entitlements where an employee is absent due to illness. While it is now settled that annual leave continues to accrue during sick leave and that a worker cannot be compelled (although may choose voluntarily) to take holidays during sick leave, the resultant implications of that legal position were more problematic. What length of time does a worker have to take those holidays upon returning to work? Does the carry-over allowance apply only to those physically unable to take holidays during their sick leave? If so, does the onus fall on the worker to demonstrate this? Would employers have to make medical decisions as to whether an illness is sufficiently limiting to qualify? Some of these questions have been addressed (for now at least) by the EAT in Plumb v Duncan Print Group Ltd.

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WHOA ME! TUOMEY!

For the second time in the past three years, Tuomey Healthcare System found its fate in the hands of the 4th Circuit Court of Appeals as a Qui Tam Defendant under the False Claims Act (“FCA”). Only this time it did not fare quite as well in what amounts to a crushing defeat. Back in […]

The post WHOA ME! TUOMEY! appeared first on OMW Health Law.

For more information please visit www.omwhealthlaw.com or click on the headline above.

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Larry Yen and Craig Rollins open the TSX

Larry Yen and Craig Rollins were in Toronto last Friday to open the market for the Toronto Stock Exchange with our client, Alpha Peak Leisure Inc. We had recently assisted Alpha Peak in closing their financing and Qualifying Transaction. You can also see the video here.

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The Two Biggest Content Marketing Blunders Lawyers Make

twofortueNobody handles content marketing perfectly.

It’s not an exact science, and for the most part, it’s an ever-adapting process that we are constantly refining based on our current goals and audience needs.

But there are a couple of areas where lawyers and law firms go astray with content marketing, and that’s what we’re going to talk about in today’s Two for Tuesdays post. 

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Court of Appeal Upholds Substantial Indemnity Costs Award

In the dog days of summer, cases that one might otherwise ignore, suddenly cry out for attention.  One such case is Matthew Brady Self Storage Corporation v. InStorage Limited Partnership 2014 ONCA858 which deals with the exciting issue of the cost consequences of offers to settle.
 
The principals of Matthew Brady Self Storage Corporation (“Matthew Brady”) jointly purchased with the principal of InStorage Limited Partnership (“InStorage”) a vacant factory in Windsor, Ontario and converted it into a self-storage facility.  InStorage was part of a group of corporations in the business of operating self-storage facilities and had approximately 50 sites in operation at the time.  Matthew Brady was incorporated for the purpose of acquiring and converting the property for the joint venture. 
 
The plans of the joint venture partners were altered when InStorage ran into financial difficulties.  This circumstance led to further negotiations and a new arrangement whereby the principals of Matthew Brady agreed to put up the entire purchase price so that Matthew Brady would become the sole owner of the Windsor property pending completion of the project.  The parties entered into a put/call agreement under which Matthew Brady could force InStorage to purchase the property through a “put” and InStorage could force Matthew Brady to sell the property to it through a “call” beginning one year following substantial completion of the retrofit and for three years after that.  
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ILN Today Post

CONSTRUCTION PROJECT MANAGER GUILTY OF CRIMINAL NEGLIGENCE IN SCAFFOLDING COLLAPSE

On June 26th 2015 the Ontario Superior Court, following a trial, convicted Metron’s project manager, Vadim Kazenelson of numerous counts of criminal negligence causing death and bodily harm in relation to the collapse of a swing stage. (See 2015 ONSC 3639.) Four workers fell 14 stories to their death and one other was seriously injured. Metron Construction Inc. had already pleaded guilty and the Ontario Court of Appeal had, despite the threat of bankruptcy, increased the company’s fine on appeal from $200,000 to $750,000 see 2013, 300 C.C.C.(3d)212. More…

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